Tag Archives: Cake

Individual Chocolate Mousse Cakes

29 Mar

March 29th, 2015

These individual mousse cakes have been on my to-do list for a while and I finally got around to them. I used a thin layer of chocolate cake as the base, but any cake flavor will do. I just happened to have chocolate cake left in my freezer and put that to use. Mousse, in general, have a lighter and airy texture because whipped creamed is used and folded into the chocolate mixture. For this reason, I am a fan of mousse desserts- whether it is chocolate mousse or a fruit-based mousse.

The next time I make this recipe, I will be sure to double the ingredients, as the following recipe yielded only three 3×3 inch rounds.

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Chocolate Mousse
216g dark chocolate, chopped
432g heavy cream
48g yolks
48g sugar
water

Y= enough to make 3- 3×3 inch individual cakes.

Directions:

  1. Melt the chocolate over a double boiler. Set aside and keep warm.
  2. Whisk heavy cream until soft peaks. Set aside and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and just enough water to coat the sugar. Stir to combine. Using a wet brush, brush the sides of the pan to remove any sugar.
  4. Heat the sugar-water mixture until the temperature reaches 240F (soft-boil).
  5. As the sugar-water mixture is heating, place egg yolks in a mixer bowl and whisk on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  6. Once the sugar-water mixture reaches 240F, carefully pour the mixture to the whisking egg yolks. Be sure to turn the mixer to the lowest speed to prevent the hot sugar mixture from splashing. Once all the sugar is added, whisk for a few seconds to combine.
  7. Add the yolk-sugar mixture to the melted chocolate. Use a spatula to fold together.
  8. Start folding in some of the whipped cream to the chocolate mixture.
  9. Continue to fold in the rest of the whipped cream.
  10. Pipe the mousse into prepared cake rings. (I prefer to pipe the mousse to avoid major air bubbles).
  11. Allow the mousse to set in the refrigerator for about an hour (or overnight) before unmolding.
  12. Carefully unmold. Garnish with cocoa powder, dollop of whipped cream and cocoa nibs if desired. Keep mousse cakes refrigerated. Remove and allow them to come to room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving.
  13. Note:  I used 3×3 inch cake rings and lined them with clear acetate strips.

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Banana Cake

19 Mar

March 19th, 2015

I often buy too many bananas and they ripen quicker than I can finish them and I absolutely hate tossing them out. So what better way to use overly ripe bananas? Use them to make banana cake!

My buttercream of choice was peanut butter flavored since I sometimes eat my bananas with peanut butter. To top that off, I drizzled some Kona chocolate sauce for a full flavor explosion.

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Banana Cake

1 ½ C sugar
4 oz butter
2 eggs
¼ tsp vanilla extract
8 oz sour cream
3 bananas, mashed
2 C AP flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda 

Y= Four 6-in layers

Directions:

  1. Cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the eggs and vanilla.
  3. Add the sour cream. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  4. Add the mashed bananas.
  5. Combine flour, salt and baking soda together.
  6. Add the dries into the wet ingredients in three additions, scraping in between each addition.
  7. Divide batter into prepared cake pans.
  8. Bake at 330F for 40-50 minutes, or until cake is done.

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Peanut Butter Buttercream
3/4 C egg whites (I used carton egg whites)
9 oz sugar
1 lb softened butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
⅛ C – ¼ C creamy peanut butter

Note: this is more than enough buttercream to frost a 4 layer cake. I just saved the extra for future use.

Directions:

  1. Whisk together sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl.
  2. Place bowl over a pot of simmering hot water.
  3. Using a hand whisk, constantly whisk the sugar-egg mixture until sugar is completely dissolved. The mixture should be warm to touch, but not burning hot on the finger.
  4. Transfer the mixer bowl to the mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whisk on medium speed until mixture is cooled. Continue to whisk until the mixture becomes meringue-like.
  5. Once the meringue is cool enough, add the softened butter, a few pieces at a time. Allow the butter to mix in before adding the next few pieces.
  6. Once the butter is all in, whisk on high speed for a few seconds. Scrape sides down if necessary.
  7. Add peanut butter, a little at a time, until desired flavor is reached.

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To assemble the cake:

  1. Divide cakes, lengthwise, into even layers.
  2. Spread buttercream on the first layer.
  3. Add the second layer and repeat with the buttercream. Repeat with other layers.
  4. Apply a thin crumb coat to the cake. Refrigerate to set the crumb coat.
  5. Apply a final coat to the cake.
  6. Decorate as desired.

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7-Layer Vanilla Bourbon Birthday Cake

9 Feb

February 9th, 2015

This weekend we celebrated my Husband’s birthday with a very boozy, 7-layer cake. He’s a big fan of drinking Whiskey (not to mention, our dog is named Whiskey) so I decided to make a vanilla Bourbon cake for his special day. Initially I only intended to flavor the cake part with Bourbon, but the alcohol baked off and only a mild alcohol taste was left. To intensify the booziness, I added more Bourbon to the buttercream. This was definitely a very adult tasting cake! 

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Vanilla Bourbon Cake

1 lb + 2 oz sugar
¾ C oil
3 eggs
1 ½ C heavy cream
1T vanilla extract
1 lb + 6 oz AP flour
2 ¼ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp salt
1 ½ C buttermilk
optional: 2-3 T Bourbon (I used Basil Hayden)
 
Y= 3- 6 inch rounds 

Directions:

  1. Combine oil and sugar together in a mixer bowl. Use the paddle attachment to mix to combine.
  2. Add eggs, one at a time.
  3. Add heavy cream and vanilla extract.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Alternate adding the dries and buttermilk, mixing in between. Scrape down sides of the bowl as necessary.
  6. Add Bourbon if using.
  7. Prepare 6-inch round cake pans- coat with non-stick spray and dust with a thin layer of flour.
  8. Divide batter evenly into cake pans.
  9. Bake at 350F for 40-45 minutes. 

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The birthday boy with his cake. 

Bourbon Simple Syrup
1 ½ C water
1 ½ C sugar
1-2 T Bourbon

Y= This recipe yields a lot of simple syrup so set aside the desired amount for soaking the cake and save the rest for future use. 

Directions:

  1. Combine water and sugar in a saucepan. Mix together. Bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat to simmer until sugar is completely dissolved. Simmer for about 15 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  4. Add Bourbon to taste.

Vanilla Bourbon Buttercream:
3/4C egg whites (I used carton egg whites)
9 oz sugar
1lb softened butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 to 5 T Bourbon

Directions:

  1. Whisk together sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl.
  2. Place bowl over a pot of simmering hot water.
  3. Using a hand whisk, constantly whisk the sugar-egg mixture until sugar is completely dissolved. The mixture should be warm to touch, but not burning hot on the finger.
  4. Transfer the mixer bowl to the mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whisk on medium speed until mixture is cooled. Continue to whisk until the mixture becomes meringue-like.
  5. Once the meringue is cool enough, add the softened butter, a few pieces at a time. Allow the butter to mix in before adding the next few pieces.
  6. Once the butter is all in, whisk on high speed for a few seconds. Scrape sides down if necessary.
  7. Add Bourbon to taste.

White Chocolate Ganache
125g white chocolate, chopped (I used Valrhona)
65mL heavy cream
food coloring (I used a soft gel by AmeriColor)

Directions:

  1. Place chocolate in a heat-proof bowl. Heat the cream until it starts to bubble along the edges.
  2. Pour the heated cream over the chocolate. Let it stand for a few minutes.
  3. Stir to combine.
  4. Add food coloring and mix together.

To assemble the cake: 

  1. Divide cakes, lengthwise, into 7 even layers.
  2. Using a pastry brush, generously soak the first layer with the Bourbon simple syrup.
  3. Spread buttercream on the first layer.
  4. Add the second layer and repeat with the simple syrup and buttercream. Repeat with other layers.
  5. Apply a crumb coat to the cake. Refrigerate to set the crumb coat.
  6. Apply a final coat to the cake.
  7. Decorate with white chocolate ganache.

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Banana Cake Pudding

3 Aug

August 3rd, 2014

During a recent work trip to Chicago, my coworker and I had some time to wander off to the Loop to do some shopping. Fortunately, we stumbled upon Magnolia Bakery, which I’ve only heard of since they have their own baking book, but have never tried anything from them. My coworker was beyond excited and insisted we get their banana pudding. She raved about their banana pudding and immediately stood in line for an order. I thought, “How good can pudding be? I mean, after all, it’s just pudding. I don’t really eat it, and it’s not my dessert of choice.” Nonetheless, I was convinced. Upon first bite, I was beyond surprised. It was light, fluffy and airy, though a bit on the sweeter side. I loved the combination of banana and wafer chunks mixed in the pudding. So I knew I had to try to re-create this upon my return home.

That night when I got back to the hotel room, I did a quick research for Magnolia’s banana pudding recipe. From what I gathered from other bloggers, they use instant vanilla pudding mix, condensed milk and boxed Vanilla Wafers. I didn’t want to resort to boxed items so instead I made vanilla pudding from scratch and opted not to use condensed milk. Instead of vanilla wafers I used vanilla cake, which I saved in the freezer from a previous cake project.

Needless to say, my version of banana cake pudding was heavenly! Not overly sweet, light and fluffy and filled with plenty of banana and cake pieces. Since it was lightened with whipped cream, it wasn’t too rich and I couldn’t help but taste it every step of the way! This is definitely a dessert where you don’t feel guilty having an extra bite! Thank you to my co-worker for introducing me to Magnolia’s banana pudding!

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Vanilla Pudding (Modified from Martha Stewart )
1/2C Sugar
3T Cornstarch
Pinch of Salt
2C Milk
3 Egg Yolks
4tsp Butter, room temperature
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

For assembling the banana cake pudding:
¾ C Heavy Whipping Cream
2 -3 Bananas, cut into pieces
Cake pieces or Vanilla Wafers

Y= 12- 5oz jars

Directions:
1. Whisk sugar, cornstarch, and salt together in a pot.
2. Whisk in milk and yolks.
3. Cook on medium heat until the mixture bubbles and slightly thickens.
4. Strain the mixture into a clean bowl.
5. Stir in vanilla extract and butter.
6. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the mixture. Let cool at room temperature for about 20 minutes. Place in refrigerator to chill overnight.
7. The next day, whip the heavy cream to stiff peaks.
8. Fold half of the whipped cream into the vanilla pudding. Continue to fold the rest of the whipped cream into the mixture.
9. Assemble into cup or ramekin of choice by layering banana pieces, cake or wafers, and pudding. Continue to form layers, ending with the pudding layer on top. Chill before serving.

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Chocolate Mousse Cake

1 Jul

July 1st, 2012

Happy first of July! In celebration of July, here’s a very chocolatey treat- a chocolate mousse cake. The cake consists of two layers, filled with chocolate mousse in the center. Once the mousse was set, I topped off the cake with a layer of espresso ganache. Chocolate + espresso…who can resist?

Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Cake

5 Sep

September 5th, 2011

The last time I made a chocolate mousse cake, I discovered how much I liked chocolate mousse, so I decided to make a similar one.  But this time around, I filled the center of the cake with strawberry slices, which I picked up the day before at the farmer’s market.

I made this to give to my friend, who was having her birthday celebration at a clubhouse. She’s a big chocolate fan, so when she saw the cake, she was very surprised.

Topped with fresh strawberries. Lightly drizzled with caramel sauce.



Cappuccino-Chocolate Mousse Cake

31 Jul

July 31st, 2011

I decided to change things up a bit and instead of making chocolate cupcakes, I made a cake. I also had a birthday celebration in which I wanted to make a cake for so it was another reason to switch from the usual cupcakes.  I found the cake recipe in the Bon Appetit book, but modified it a little and instead of using fudge frosting, I opted for a mousse frosting.  I added a lot of espresso powder to the cake batter because I love the smell and taste of espresso. The espresso and chocolate combination makes this cake very rich, but the lite and fluffy mousse balances out the cake part. (I could have eaten just the mousse alone…I had to refrain from licking the spatula!)

I’ve been seeing a lot of strawberries at the grocery store for cheap lately. So I picked some up to add to this birthday mousse cake.


Happy Birthday, July Babies!

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